Dead Low Tide by John D. MacDonald
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This has always been one of my favorite MacDonald novels. I read late in the night not wanting to put it down just as I had back in those reading under the covers with a flashlight days. Unlike Soft Touch, this one is not a classic noir. We have the everyman protagonist who is seemingly set up by the femme fatale, but this is more a mystery that needs to be solved rather than a descent into noir fatalism - at least from the protagonist's perspective. Most of the other characters, however, do not fare so well. Bit of a love story in this one, too, but it seems organic rather than gratuitous, and that elevates this one from the otherwise despairing depths.